55% of Southeast Asians ready for domestic travel; safety budget top priorities

Written on:
April 22, 2024
Milieu Team

As summer approaches, Southeast Asia is gearing up for a surge in domestic travel, with the Philippines and Indonesia leading the pack in interest for local getaways. A recent report by Milieu Insight, a survey software company in Southeast Asia, sheds light on the summer travel plans of Southeast Asians, with safety and budget considerations taking precedence.

The study, conducted by Milieu Insight’s proprietary survey community, polled 1,966 individuals from the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia. Representative of the online adult population aged 16 and above, and the fieldwork was carried out from 7th to 31st March 2024.

According to the report, over 6 in 10 respondents prioritise safety and cost when choosing domestic travel destinations, with 55% expressing their willingness to travel domestically this year.

Gerald Ang, Founder and CEO of Milieu Insight, highlighted the importance of affordability and safety in driving travel choices: “Our report highlights the summer travel plans of many Southeast Asians. As people seek to explore their own countries, affordability and safety are key factors driving their choice. At the same time, many travelers in Asia are increasingly budget-driven, and they are embracing family-oriented experiences, by finding value in land transportation and road trips.”

The report underscores a significant trend: with inflation driving prices high and international travel becoming more costly, domestic leisure travel is expected to remain strong among Southeast Asians. The survey revealed that while cost remains a top consideration for 62% of travelers in the region, safety takes precedence, with 63% prioritising secure destinations and scenic spots.

One notable trend is the preference for land transport for domestic vacations, with a significant 74% of travellers opting for this mode of transportation. Thai and Indonesian travelers, in particular, showed a strong preference for land travel, with 88% and 76% respectively choosing this option.

Family-focused travel experiences are also on the rise, with 79% of travelers in Southeast Asia planning to embark on their adventures with their families. Families are prioritising quality time together, seeking to create memories while exploring local hidden gems. Culinary exploration and immersive touring experiences are becoming increasingly popular, with more than half of the respondents expressing interest in making their domestic travels about food and exploring local landmarks.

While hotels remain the preferred choice, capturing 78% of preferences across all surveyed countries, unique alternatives such as Airbnb and pool villas are gaining traction. In Malaysia, 44% of travelers opt for personalised experiences offered by Airbnb, while in Thailand, 47% are drawn to the luxury and exclusivity of pool villas.

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